The Saker’s “Grim View”
by Gilbert Doctorow, Ph.D.
In an article posted on this morning’s Russia Insider entitled “Russia is Ready for War. Mood on Prime-time TV is Grim,” the Saker sets out a list of conclusions he found watching Russian television, presumably last night (https://russia-insider.com/en/russia-ready-war-mood-prime-time-tv-grim/ri23019).
The program he watched seems not to be cited, though it is a safe guess it was Sunday Evening with Vladimir Solovyov.
I salute The Saker for being one of the mighty few colleagues in alternative news, not to mention mainstream news, who actually follows what the Russians are saying at the source: on their television programs directed at the domestic audience
At the same time, while acknowledging the airing of the views he sets out in his essay, he has intentionally skewed his article to promote the negativism he brought with him to the write-up. My own take-away from that program was diametrically opposite: to find great encouragement that the US generals, especially Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Dunford, are not the OK Corral shoot-out boys some of us would like to paint them, even if one, Secretary of Defense Matthis, may be clueless.
What I heard on the Solovyov program is that the US military know precisely the positions of Russian cruisers, submarines, aircraft and missiles in the Middle East region, that is to say, they understand that the Russians are on a war footing and fully prepared to execute the deadly counter strike promised by General Gerasimov several weeks ago if the US dares to cross the Russian red lines and launch a strike against Damascus or other locations where Russia has its armed forces embedded with the Syrians. The US generals, unlike the US politicians and media and US administration, is risk-averse if the outcome may be catastrophic. Accordingly, the strike Trump has promised to “avenge” the utterly phony chemical attack in Douma, Eastern Ghouta, will have another vector, most likely to strike against Iran, which Trump held up as the co-supporters of “Animal” Assad.
Why Iran? Well, that falls entirely in line with Trump’s anti-Iranian stance in general and it will test the alliance between Russia, Turkey and Iran whose presidents last week reconfirmed their commitment to a jointly managed final political and military settlement in Syria. Indeed, there is no alliance between Russia and Iran, and the US can proceed as it sees fit in attacking Iran, subject of course, to Teheran’s ability and readiness attack US bases and armed detachments in its region in response.
I do not say that this alternative reading of the likely evolution of the Great Power confrontation in the Middle East is a happy one. But it remains at the level of proxies and does not take us over the precipice to WWIII, as Saker’s and most other Western commentators in alternative media would have us believe.
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© Gilbert Doctorow, 2018
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Gilbert Doctorow is an independent political analyst based in Brussels. His latest book, Does the United States Have a Future? was published on 12 October 2017. Both paperback and e-book versions are available for purchase on http://www.amazon.com and all affiliated Amazon websites worldwide. See the recent professional review http://theduran.com/does-the-united-states-have-a-future-a-new-book-by-gilbert-doctorow-review/ For a video of the book presentation made at the National Press Club, Washington, D.C. on 7 December 2017 see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ciW4yod8upg